William Makepeace Thackeray – Vanity Fair

Vanity Fair is a satirical novel of manners which takes place during, and in the decade after, the battle of Waterloo in 1815. The various scenes in the novel range across Europe and England. It was first published in serial form beginning in 1847. The work is by turns witty, scintillating, brutally realistic, tragic, humorous, and always fascinating. The title of the book stems from Bunyans Pilgrims Progress, where Vanity is a town along the pilgrims route, and which holds an eternal fair of the vanities. It is a place where people are ensnared by worldly things. By Thackerays time, Vanity Fair had come to be seen as a playground of the idle rich and their sychophants. As an example of the Victorian novel, there is none finer than this.
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Ivan Goncharov – Oblomov

Oblomov is one of the most distinctive characters in Russian literature – within a short time following its publication in 1859, the novel spawned its own saying: Oblomovism! From the pen of Ivan Goncharov (1812-1891) emerged a portrait of a young man, Ilya Ilyitch Oblomov, who represented a figure well known in prerevolutionary Russia at the time – one of the idle rich.
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William Shakespeare – Shakespeare’s Classic: Hamlet

William Shakespeare, the 16th century English poet, playwright, and actor is generally regarded as the best writer in the English language and the world’s best dramatist. He was a very prolific writer and his work consists of 39 plays, 154 sonnets, a few poems, and two long narrative poems. His plays have been translated into every major language and are performed more often than those of any other playwright.
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Lyman Frank Baum – The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (Annotated)

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by Lyman Frank Baum, better known and loved today as simply The Wizard of Oz, is a tale that has been cherished throughout the years. This timeless story has inspired Broadway shows, cartoon series, and many films over the past few generations. I hope that this book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by Lyman Frank Baum has inspired your sense of creativity and wonder.
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Emma Goldman – The Truth About the Bolsheviki

Emma Goldman was initially supportive of Russias Bolshevik revolution. This 1918 pamphlet was published in elucidation of the revolution and in justification of the Bolsheviks. Goldman reversed her opinion in the wake of the Kronstadt rebellion and denounced the Soviet Union for its violent repression of independent voices.
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John Locke – The Second Treatise on Civil Government

The English philosopher and physician John Locke (1632 – 1704) is widely regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment thinkers. His work had a significant effect on the development of epistemology and political philosophy. The Second Treatise on Civil Government places sovereignty in the hands of the people, as Locke’s fundamental argument is that people are equal and invested with natural rights in a state of nature in which they live free from outside rule.
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E. Belfort Bax – Modern Socialism

Ernest Belfort Bax (1854-1926) was an English barrister, journalist, philosopher, rights advocate, and historian. In this essay, after dismissing St. Simonism, Fourierism, Owenism, and Continental Nihilists, Bax attempts to explain what modern socialism, taken broadly, really means, as well as what it implies. He outlines the three bases of modern socialism as the direction of industry by a democratic state instead of by private capitalists; as a universal Federal Republic to take the place of the present nationalist system; and in religion, a human ideal to take the place of theological cults.
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